Desperately Seeking Jessica
[Published 06/07/2012 by Project 1979, a "transmedia-fuelled performance which aims at creating an experience examining the 30-something generation"].
A few months back, I asked this lovely writer for a little interview for “The Faces of project1979″ feature. We met when I became enamored of her blog about life and nostalgia (seeking theme here, yes). As I am in her home country, preparing for project1979: London I thought I’d get this lady’s life out here for you all to read. Enjoy!
Could you describe what you do? Well, I don’t wish to show off, but I seem to have perfected the fine art of making a complete tit of myself on an almost daily basis. I also talk too much.
How did you get into blogging, writing and being your wonderful self? I spent much of my childhood defending myself from my four brothers’ latest Nerf gun / water pistol / snow ball attack, locking them in the shed for holding Miss Piggy captive, falling out of trees, pining after a Magna Doodle (when all I had was a lousy Etch a Sketch) and trying to fathom my best friend’s Mr. Frosty ice maker.
I studied English at University and graduated with honours in 2005. Clearly the next logical step was to overlook my hard-earned degree and work at an online bank for the next six and a half years.
It was only recently, when made redundant, that I decided to have a mature conversation with my older brother about career options. He suggested something quite brilliant: “Do something you enjoy”.
Which brings me here.
What’s unfolding for you in the next few months? I’m still seeking a day job, to cover the mortgage repayments, but as a sideline – I plan to take over the world with my blog.
What did it take for you to get to where you are today? Hard work, determination, love, laughter and lots of peanut butter sandwiches.
You’re a pretty positive lady. How do you do it? I think very nearly dying once really helped. It made me realise that life is frickin’ awesome and that you should savour every second.
I am also fortunate enough to love and be loved. When you’ve got that, you don’t need anything else.
Where do you draw your greatest inspiration? My mother has always inspired me. She was a music journalist in the sixties and seventies. I once tried to Google one of her articles at work (“The Contents of Freddie Mercury’s Pants are His Alone”) and the firewall blocked it for being too rude.
She’s an utter legend.
What’s the biggest hurdle that you’ve loved tackling in your process of becoming the fabulous you?Life itself can be challenging. I once forgot to wear cycling shorts beneath my school dress and proceeded to inadvertently flash my knickers to all the boys in the playground whilst practising handstands.
I have also been known to cut my own fringe, pluck my eyebrows and dye my hair. Never successfully.
As a college student I learnt that University officials prefer not to liaise with kitchen appliances when congratulating you on exam results. “Hi this is the tumble dryer. The answering machine can’t get to the phone right now, so please leave a message after the beep”.
I accidentally went to work once with my jumper on inside out; that certainly raised a few eyebrows. Most recently, I virtually crippled myself by choosing to walk three miles home in four inch heels.
So the biggest hurdle I’ve faced is growing up, living life and trying to be me. I wouldn’t change it for the world.
What’s the highlight of your day? Laughing with my husband. Every single day; without fail.
Theme song of your childhood? Most definitely The Fresh Prince of Bel Air! I finally learnt all of the words in 1993, which was the proudest moment of my entire life – until I got Freshly Pressed this February.
When you look back at the decades of your life, what do you feel makes you proud to be part of our generation? I think we deserve credit for all the hours we devoted to recording our favourite songs onto mix-tapes. That took dedication.
I also love that we spent our childhoods outdoors – building dens, jumping off swings, riding bikes, grazing knees and only coming home when it got dark.
Best piece of advice given or received? “The people who are crazy enough to think they can change the world are the ones who do” (Steve Jobs). I like to think of myself as a square peg in a round hole. That’s my excuse anyway.
If you could get one thing back from your past, what would it be? I would warmly welcome the return of my twenty-six inch waist. I really miss it.
[Published 21/03/2012 by Murmurations, an online arts magazine dedicated to exposing artists and writers in the community of creative arts].
I was exceptionally scrawny as a child, despite eating a balanced diet of crustless peanut butter and banana sandwiches, chicken nuggets and various oat-based cereals with fun-shaped marshmallow pieces.
I spent most of my childhood climbing trees, mastering cartwheels and running away from my four brothers’ latest Nerf gun assault. Had I maintained such activities into adulthood, I’m pretty confident I’d still have a 26 inch waist and arms like Jennifer Aniston. Sadly I gave them all up, along with friendship bracelet making and Troll collecting…
I grew up in the 80s. Alice bands, shell suits and scrunchies were in vogue. Televisions were fat and people were slim. Big Bird was my moral compass and Madonna, my fashion icon. I learnt all of my best moves from Michael Jackson and mastered self defence, courtesy of Mister Miyagi.
Bart Simpson gave me an excuse for everything. “I didn’t do it. Nobody saw me do it. You can’t prove anything”. (This phrase came in handy when my youngest brother was once again found locked in the shed, after giving one of my Trolls a skinhead).
There were certain glorious invariable childhood truths: Santa always delivered. I received financial compensation for the loss of every tooth and a generous bunny hid chocolate eggs in my back garden once a year.
As an honorary Scout, I was always taught to be prepared. As such, I dutifully had my life fully mapped out by the age of nine. Zack Morris from Saved by the Bell would eventually realise the error of his ways, dump Kelly Kapowski and marry me. We’d have five children, named Magnum, Knight Rider, She-Ra, Kermit and Mister T. My outline drawings of Snoopy and Garfield would result in me being headhunted by Disney and my preferred mode of transport would of course be my trusty hot-pink hoverboard.
We don’t yet have any children, but he’s surprisingly enthusiastic about the name Mister T for our firstborn son. My outline drawings were outrageously overlooked by both Disney and Pixar, although I am yet to hear back from DreamWorks, so fingers crossed.
I await the arrival of my fuchsia hoverboard with baited breath.
Current ETA: 2032. Michael J Fox has a lot to answer for.